In horticulture you can graft desirable fruit onto another tree. You can for example have an Orange tree that also grows you a few Lemons for cooking. You can have an Apple tree that also provides some nice juicy Pears.
So why not graft some of GM’s most famous and desirable models from dead brands into current brands? All you need do is tell the public that is what you are doing and the Branding words you need use can be as simple as these…
Pontiac GTO by Cadillac
Hummer H3 by GMC
Pontiac Firebird/Trans Am by Buick
No need to revive dead brands and dealer networks. The cars just sit as stand-alone models in their newly adopted dealer network.
Equally, if you don’t have a Cadillac or Chevrolet dealer network in say Australia or elsewhere you just brand models as such..
Chevrolet Camaro by Holden
Chevrolet Camaro by Vauxhall
Cadillac CTS-V by Holden
Cadillac ATS-V Coupe by Opel
And even models can be swapped among the core brands. For example, with no Chevrolet dealerships in say Europe to appropriately sell Corvettes just move it to the Cadillac dealers when they are set up.
Chevrolet Corvette by Cadillac
This is the simplest way for GM to solve it’s age old problem of not being One Ford or One Toyota. GM is hamstrung in an increasingly globalizing world with global media and advertising by having so many brands.
The answer is to simply unchain the brands, and let them select models a la carte. If you are Opel of Italy and you think there is a niche in your market that GM already makes a car to fill, then just fill it with that car. No need to change it’s name just call it by it’s real name and add “by Opel” after it.
If Opel makes say a little Adam Truckster mate to the Adam Hatch, which GMC in the US thinks has niche potential to appeal to the urban lifestyle crowd on the West Coast, then import it and sell as the Opel Adam Truckster by GMC.
GM needs to loosen up and deregulate it’s own internal rules. No more this brand has to be better or worse than that brand. No more this car can’t be faster or more powerful than that car.
Every brand in every global region must be independent profit centers who decide what they can sell. If they think they can sell a car GM makes that nobody else is selling in their region, then let them sell it. GM is meant to be in the car selling business – not in the rationing out cars business.